Singapore. Our 11 hour & 30 mins flight from Copenhagen taxied Changi Airport terminal early yesterday morning. It was an easy, smooth and relaxing plane ride back, and the service we got from our flight’s crew members were really commendable. At one point I was telling my mom that one of the flight attendant was
almost too eager & too enthusiastic to serve. It really makes a big difference if you love your job and we DO appreciate these kind gestures in return.
Now, after spending 14 days in 3 Scandinavian countries – Denmark, Sweden & Norway, I can conclude that I liked Sweden the most, followed by Denmark then Norway.
I like Sweden’s general landscape & progressiveness in terms of keeping up with the times – fashion, people & technology. These are my personal observations from a tourist point of view and it might not be entirely accurate if you are one of the locals living in those countries, so no offense!
(and don’t start sending me hate comments after this.)
I will blog in more details my experiences per country in the days to come.
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Scandinavia with Mother
I always tell people that amongst the trips that I enjoyed most are the ones that I had great companions with – that actually compliments the place that I am visiting. To me, it is 70% Companion & 30% Location.
Waiting for our train to the airport (Copenhagen).
Mom started to be really excited & was very happy that we are heading home.
This time was with my mom and it was a good time to spend with her (and still be of service to my royal highness even after being married). Although it could have been even better if we were all together – dad, sister and Selwyn.
We spent our days very relaxed (almost too relaxed), partly because we were bored and mom caught a flu-like bacterial infection just before we started this trip so she was still taking her meds half the time we were travelling.
We were bored because there were not much things to see that we have not “sort-of” seen before. But then it was also a good time to remind ourselves on how blessed we are to have been so privileged, to be able to visit various beautiful places in this God-given world – especially mom, who is actually our queen of travel.
Nevertheless, I enjoyed the trip mainly because of my mother’s candidness plus the simple joys of just being together.
Here are some of the things that I want to remember during this trip with my mother.
At Forex (Money Changer):
Girl: The exchange rate is XXX against the dollar, so you’ll get X amount for that…
Mom (Looks away and said): Whhhat-ever!
*She did this without even realising what she said. I just burst into laughter.
At Flam (Scenic little town in Norway):
We were complementing the nice the view from our hotel room… and suddenly she notices the big cruise ship near us. Since then she could not stop saying… “When is that ship leaving?” It bothered her so much that she went up to a group of Filipino cruise crew to ask “Hanggang kailan kayo dito?” (Until when will you guys be here?). When she heard that they will be leaving in 2 hours time, that’s when she went back to enjoying the scenery… but she would still occasionally speak about it again when its blocking our view. Oh mother!
Around 5.30pm – almost everyday:
Mom: Let’s go back to the hotel…there’s nothing to see here.
*By 6.30, she will be tucked inside her side of the bed, together with the laptop – checking fashion & personality blogs and some Philippine news.
After Check-in (All Hotels):
- Check if there is a kettle – for her to boil some water.
- She pours the boiling water to the toilet bowl, seat, seat cover & sink.
- She wipes the remote control & table with a clean towel.
- She wraps around tissue papers into those she will later on touch and use (after already wiping it with a clean towel). – Door handles, hair dryers, and etc…
*Regardless of room conditions she did this; and all our rooms are actually very clean and is in very good condition. I think this is where I inherited my mild OCD but no one can really beat the source! lol!
Instagram, Twitter & WhatsApp:
Mom (every time she sees me playing with my phone): You have WiFi?
Mom: Set it up on my phone too!
Mom: I want to check my Instagram & Twitter feeds; and WhatsApp your dad & your sister.
*She is not techy but she loves her iPhone.
Bread & Food:
She also likes to have ugly looking breads – the darker the better, and among her favourite are the ryes and she snacks on this regularly during the day – which makes her really full. And when she is full, she assumes that I am too, but I don’t snack… Bottom line is, me & my mom are not a good team when it comes to food choices.
On the Plane:
The happiest that I have seen my mom during our trip was during our plane ride back to Singapore. She was smiling all the way, was chatty and was eating a whole lot.
At one point, she wanted to read the magazine but could not find her reading glasses inside her bag…
Me: Ma, please don’t attempt to read if you can’t find your glasses…
Me: You’ll end up asking me about everything.
**Mom Ignores me and began flipping the magazine.**
Mom (Pointing at the photo above): Is that a Sheep or a Dog?
Me (laughing): See I told you! Don’t Read! It’s a DOG!
*She laughed and ignored my advice again. I pretended to have a headache and closed my eyes.
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I was telling my friend John that if I were to do a short film on our Scandinavian trip, the title would be…“Enjoying the Simple Joys in Life”. Because this is what we did – Laugh at things, laugh at how bored we are and laugh at ourselves – that why did we even decide to go to Scandinavia in the first place.
But honestly, if you are just after the relaxing bit & enjoying time together, Scandinavia is not bad choice (minus all our tiring train rides) after all, but next time, we will definitely go somewhere nearer if we were just after the relaxation.
Lastly, a shot of our semi-pathetic gifts (pasalubong) to our respective husbands…
Almost identical sets of – one chocolate bar, one canned mackerel & one canned sardines.
While they work, we play; and these are all they are getting from us – we laughed again. Okay, this might be an exaggeration but really, we did not buy much either.
Going back to Scandinavia for the second time? Maybe not!
Recommending friends to visit Scandinavia? Maybe not too! Unless they have been to most places in Europe. But actually, even then, maybe not!